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28.02.2007 Health

Clarify Free Medical Care For Children

The Administrator of the Princess Marie Louise Children's Hospital in Accra, Madam Elizabeth Dogbe, has called on the government to clarify the free medical care policy for children under the age of five.

She said even though the policy stated that children who were under five should receive medical attention free of charge, health institutions had to struggle to get re-imbursement for services rendered.

In an interview with Madam Dogbe in Accra, she said the Children's Hospital was worst hit because it is a hospital mainly for children.

According to her, health institutions that take care of delivery and other cases are better placed because the delivery exemption for pregnant women is always available unlike that for its under-five children.

She blamed the situation on the attitude of adults towards issues relating to children in the country.

She said even when such expenditures were re-imbursed, they were never done fully, adding , "Sometimes you could submit a bill of ¢10 million as medical expenses of children under-five but you will be lucky to receive ¢5 million."

Madam Dogbe mentioned for instance that 80 years since the hospital was established, it was yet to have a theatre.

She, therefore, appealed to parents to join the National Health Insurance Scheme to relieve health institutions of the burden.

According to her, the scheme is faster in repaying health institutions as compared to the government.